Living Life in a Fish Bowl!

Gloria’s take on life.

laugh

Laughter
I laugh often, sometimes not often enough. I am learning to laugh more. Spilt milk – laughter is so much better than frustration. Stub my toe – laughter makes it not hurt as much.
 
Laughter is contagious.
 
Just this morning I was watching a video of this woman who could barely talk due to laughing so hard at herself. It was so contagious that it brought my husband into the dining room to see what could possibly be so funny.
 
Negativity, anger, irritation are all contagious but so is laughter. May we be people who spread laughter.
 
“Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come.” Proverbs 31:25 ESV (Notice strength, dignity, laughter with worry/fear not mentioned anywhere.)
During covid19 it can be easy to slip into the trap of the enemy and see only bad reports.  The media will give you ample opportunities to focus on what is going wrong.  While we need to be people who are aware of what is happening, we should not become people filled with fear and worry.   Don’t fall for that trap. 
God is still God.  He is still greater.  He has a plan and He is working things out for your good.  Trust Him.  (Romans 8:28)  Raise your shield of faith high and quench those darts of the enemy.  (Eph 6:16)
“He will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy.” Job 8:21 ESV (Psalm 126:2)
 
If, like me, you have responsibilities and deadlines that need your attention — determine to find things to laugh about. It is a great stress release. Watch a cat video if you can’t think of anything else.
til next time
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May 14, 2020 Posted by | covid 19, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

limitations

My husband has a to-do list. We would love for some things to get crossed off this list while we are spending time at home. Sadly we are limited due to not having what we need to accomplish the task.
 
In order to fix the downstairs spigot he needs a new one. To identify the problem with the trailer lights, he needs something from the hardware store. Even to change the furnace filter, he needs a new filter.
 
This morning I was feeling the pressure of my own limitations. Then I took a shower. For me, running water clears my head. My sister and I often joke about – “Having a bad day?” “Take a shower.” I should have done it sooner. I wasted a whole morning.
 
I was reminded that God is not hindered by limitations. Social distancing doesn’t apply to Him. He is not a carrier of covid19. We can get as close to Him as we choose.
 
“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you…” James 4:8 NASB
 
“When You said, “Seek My face,” my heart said to You, “Your face, O Lord, I shall seek.” Psalm 27:8 NASB
 
You have what you need to draw closer to God. Open your bible, let the Living Word of God refresh you and remind you that God is greater. Talk with Him, tell Him what you are feeling but don’t stay stuck there. Allow Him to speak into your heart.
 
Take a shower (it might help) and picture the stress washing away. Then let God wrap you in the towel of His peace and grace.
 
aw tozer
til next time
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April 4, 2020 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

hope

Knowing that God is with me always and He will make a way – gives me peace. In the midst of the uncertainty that we are living in right now — peace is what my hearts needs.
 
“The wise counsel God gives when I’m awake
is confirmed by my sleeping heart.
Day and night I’ll stick with God;
I’ve got a good thing going and I’m not letting go.
I’m happy from the inside out,
and from the outside in, I’m firmly formed.
You canceled my ticket to hell—
that’s not my destination!” Psalm 16:8-10 The Message
 
“I am happy from the inside out.” There is the key to true happiness/joy. What is going on inside us – what we are dwelling on, what we do when fear/worry/stress is trying to knock us down — Trust God.
 
Stability – Confidence – Patience – Hope!!
 
Growing in my understanding of how much God loves me – gives me stability when all else may be unstable.
 
Seeing example after example of ‘in my weakness He is strong’ – gives me confidence. (This ‘going live’ is such a real example of God’s present help in my life.)
 
Understanding that in some things I just won’t understand and the freedom that comes from realizing I don’t have to understand, I only need trust – gives me patience.
 
Resting in assurance that He is in control – gives me hope.
 
Yes, ‘day and night I’ll stick with God.’
 
Keep on keeping on — trust God, read your Bible, spend time talking with Him and listening to Him. Allow Him to refresh you.
 
til next time
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April 3, 2020 Posted by | Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

peace

God’s peace – it is a wonderful gift that is ours through Christ Jesus.

“For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility,” Ephesians 2:14 NIV

In John 14:27 Jesus says, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you…” Later in John (16:37) he says, “… in Me you may have peace…”

God offers to us peace. In the midst of whatever is going on we can turn to God, giving Him our hurts, confusion, stress, anxiety, struggle… and receive from Him peace that goes beyond our understanding. (Philippians 4:6-7)

If we could market peace, true inner peace, into a capsule form, we would make millions. I believe it would be the hottest selling item. There are just so many miserable, stressed out people in the world today. Sadly, Christians can fall into that trap as well.

“The steadfast of mind You will keep in perfect peace,
Because he trusts in You. “Trust in the Lord forever,
For in God the Lord, we have an everlasting Rock.” Isaiah 26:3-4 (NASB)

The key to living a life of peace is to be steadfast, trusting that in any situation that arises, God is in control and He is greater than whatever life throws at us. It is when we take our eyes off of Jesus and fixate on the problem that our peace can go right out the window.

Nothing takes God by surprise. (Psalm 139) He is not off on some vacation unaware of what you are facing. Instead, He is with you. (Matt 28:20) He will make a way. (Isa 43:16) He is for you. (Psalm 118:6) He is working all things out for good. (Romans 8:28) Nothing, absolutely nothing is too difficult for Him. (Jer 32:17, Luke 1:37)

Keep trusting – it isn’t over yet,

til next time

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March 3, 2020 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, Pastor's wife, relationships, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

chronic stress?

Stress can be a big deal.  Some of us are walking around in chronic stress.  What can we do to reduce stress?
 
The Bible tells us:
“You keep him in perfect peace
whose mind is stayed on you,
because he trusts in you.” Isaiah 26:3 ESV
 
Where our mind is, where our thoughts go will impact the amount of stress we deal with.
 
“For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot.” Romans 8:5-7 ESV
 
“To set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.”  There is the key to handling stress. Where is your mind set?
 
Meditation and memorization of the scripture are huge tools to setting your mind on the things of God. When is the last time you meditated? (Rehashing negative things is a form of mediation. It is not a good form and it will not lead you to peace.)
 
Here are a couple great scriptures to memorize and then meditate on when you feel stress knocking.
“In God I have put my trust, I shall not be afraid. What can man do to me?” Psalm 56:11 NASB
 
“The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me?” Psalm 118:6 ESV
 
 
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Setting my mind on the Spirit!
til next time
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November 12, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

yes, you have a choice

We (my husband and I) are four weeks into post-op.  To say it has been a challenge is an understatement.  Neither of us had any real idea of what to expect.  Oh, I had expectations alright.  Reality is nothing like my expectations.

Looking back over the past four weeks, there is one thing that keeps popping up. I would find myself overwhelmed and God would lovingly, ever so gently pick me up and calm my anxiety. (This was very evident when I was driving in the foothills of Tennessee – on back roads that were narrow and not marked.)

I had a choice. We always have a choice.

I could wallow in self-pity. I could embrace the anxiety and carry it with me like a blanket. I could give in, clinch my fists and shut down. OR I could cry out to God. I could choose to believe what I know to be true and not what I was currently ‘feeling.” I could, with open arms, receive God’s grace and strength for each moment.

Psalm 61:1-4 NLT
“O God, listen to my cry!
Hear my prayer!
From the ends of the earth,
I cry to you for help
when my heart is overwhelmed.
Lead me to the towering rock of safety,
for you are my safe refuge,
a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me.
Let me live forever in your sanctuary,
safe beneath the shelter of your wings!”

What are you facing today? What ‘enemies’ are trying to overtake you today? (Fear? Doubt? Frustration? Financial? Relationships? Work? School?…)

Will you choose to receive from God the strength and grace that He offers? Will you choose to trust Him today?

God is for you, with you, and making a way. (Psalm 118:6, Matt 28:20, Isaiah 43:19)

Til next time

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October 29, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, ministry, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

meditation anyone?

Do you find yourself going over and over something?  Then you know how to meditate.  The importance is what you are going over and over.
We can rehash a bad experience and that takes us to a negative place.  We can dwell on something that made us angry.  That is a great way to stay angry.
As a christian we are told to meditate on God’s Word.
Let’s do that today.  Wherever you find yourself, take some time to meditate on God’s Word.
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Are you feeling stressed?
“do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Phil 4:6-7 ESV
Are you tired?
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matt 11:28-30 ESV
Are you overwhelmed?
“From the end of the earth I will cry to You, When my heart is overwhelmed; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.” Psalm 61:2 NKJV
Do you need to be reminded that God loves you?
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16 KJV
Does life seem out of control?
“Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,and your dominion endures through all generations. The Lord is trustworthy in all he promisesand faithful in all he does.
The Lord upholds all who falland lifts up all who are bowed down.” Psalm 145:13-14 NIV
Here is what I am meditating on today?
“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;his mercies never come to an end;they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentation 3:22-23 ESV
What are you meditating on today?
til next time
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June 20, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, life lessons, living in a fish bowl, ministry, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

i want to do it all!

How’s your soul? (will, mind, emotions)

“Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And all that is within me, bless His holy name.” Psalm 103:1

Often I have to make the choices so that I am not going to get crazy stressed.   I have to talk with God about it often, otherwise I am pretty much programed to over-work and over-extend myself.

I want to do it all!

“He makes me to lie down in green pastures: he leads me beside the still waters.” Psalm 23:2 Yes, still waters in the middle of Christmas prep.

Lysa Terkeurst shares (in her book The Best Yes) four important things to consider when making commitments. Will this fit physically, financially, spiritually, and emotionally?

I generally have no problem deciding if I can physically do the task, if we have the money for the task or if the task is in line with God’s Word. However, do I have the emotional energy needed to complete the task? This is the one that I have tended to ignore in the past.

Here’s what can happen when we don’t consider if we have the emotional energy needed. We may grumble the whole time. We may take it out on those closest to us. We may even not follow through with what we had said that we would do. Something will give and usually it isn’t a good thing.

When I ask myself those 4 questions then I am able to decide my best yes. Just because it is a good thing doesn’t mean it is good for me to do it at this time. As much as I want to do it all, I can’t. And neither can you.

How’s my soul? Good, real good!

What about you? How is your soul?

Silah,

til next time

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February 10, 2018 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, living in a fish bowl, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

i need help

Where does our help come from?

I have often quoted Psalm 46:1 — Our God is an ever present help in trouble. The first part of that verse is equally as important. God is our refuge and strength.

When frustration, fear, anger, worry, or stress tries to over take us, let’s not forget where our help comes from and in whose strength we can count on.

“I will lift up my eyes to the mountains;
From where shall my help come?
My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.” Psalm 121:1-2

There is nothing that compares to God. Truly there is none like Him. (Deut 33:26, 1 Chron 17:20, Jer 10:6, Psalm 86:7-9)

“Then I heard something like the voice of a great multitude and like the sound of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, saying,

“Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns.” Revelation 19:6

God, I look to You…..

https://youtu.be/t4A0miZINNo

til next time

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November 30, 2017 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, ministry, Pastor's wife, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

wonder

live out loud

 

PERSPECTIVE – GRATITUDE – WONDER
 
Some songs are as powerful the 99th time you hear it as it was the first time you heard it.
 
“I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean.”
 
PERSPECTIVE – GRATITUDE – WONDER
Psalm 136:3 (NKJV)
“Oh, give thanks to the Lord of lords!
For His mercy endures forever:”
 
PERSPECTIVE – GRATITUDE – WONDER
 
“I hope you never lose your sense of wonder.”
 
Psalm 136:4 (NKJV)
“To Him who alone does great wonders,
For His mercy endures forever;”
 
Our God is so creative!
 
PERSPECTIVE, GRATITUDE, and WONDER!
Psalm 136:5 (NKJV)
 “To Him who by wisdom made the heavens,
For His mercy endures forever;”
 
When was the last time you looked up at the sky and thought about how vast it is?
 
PERSPECTIVE, GRATITUDE, and WONDER.
 
“I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance. Never settle for the path of least resistance…….. And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance — I hope you dance.”
 
Don’t fear those mountains. Keeping things in perspective reduces stress. Does it really matter? Is it worth getting frustrated? In the scope of the next five years – will it even be remembered?
 
Have a heart of gratitude. Take time to pause.
 
I don’t want to miss out on living because I was too busy to notice. I don’t want to settle for good enough.  I want to dance!!
I challenge you to stop, look around you, and really take in the moment. Allow yourself to be right where you are, not looking ahead to the next thing on the agenda or playing the “I’ll be happy when” game.   Dance!
 
PERSPECTIVE, GRATITUDE, and WONDER!
Selah!
til next time
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August 3, 2017 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, life lessons, pastor, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment